On 11 October, a few prospective medic Sixth Formers went to Harefield Hospital. During our time there, we learnt more about the different problems that affect the heart and their treatments.

We began the day with a brief introduction by one of the consultants at the hospital. He gave us a little background about Harefield Hospital. It was built with a large portion of the building facing the sunrise so that people with tuberculosis (what the hospital was originally built for) could get fresh air therapy.

Following this we learnt about heart attacks, with two other doctors explaining their pathogenesis and the importance of understanding how to ‘restart a heart’. After a short break, we went right back to it, learning about heart rhythms and valves: three short talks about preventing heart disease and problems and treatments associated with the heart valves and heart rhythm. In the afternoon, we got hands-on practical training, learning resuscitation skills and there was a small simulation training, where a small group went off and dealt with a scenario as if they were in an emergency.

Finally, as the day came to a close, there was a Q&A with the doctors and nurses who ran the event. The day was a very useful experience, giving all of us the opportunity to learn about some of the issues about the heart in more detail.